Sample Term Paper

In the towns ofWestern Africa, women enjoyed a dominant position in the formal economy.  While women can still be seen as major stakeholders in the local markets of most West African countries, one has to understand that in the pre-colonial era most of these local markets acted as engines of the traditional economy generating taxes and other revenues,

contributing towards local employment and providing the agricultural heartland with distributive infrastructure.  For example, the Egba women ofNigeriahad been involved in trade for centuries with businesses being passed from one generation to another.  Commanding a dominant position in the market system had allowed these women to organize the market forces and develop rules to govern trade amongst themselves as well as with outsiders to the best of their advantage.  The resultant economic clout further allowed these women to protect and promote their business and social interests. (Little, 1973)

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